On the ‘Bias and Variance’ of the Masterpieces

Mathematics and Literature Analysis. Snapshot at Kalidasa’s works.

What sets apart one creation from another? There is a remarkable difference between the mundane and the masterpiece that sets it apart. At the same time, the masterpiece has a sense of ‘theme, structure and harmony’. If we can call this constant part as ‘bias’ and the variety and the variable part as ‘variance’.

It is this weave and interlude of ‘fixed’ and ‘variable’ components that makes the work of masterpieces so appealing.

Continuing on my previous post of ‘Dictionary of Kalidasa’. Mathematically, if we had to characterize works of literature, it has to be beyond ‘dictionary count’, ‘word distribution’ and Entropy in terms of words and syllable patterns. There has to be other measures for ‘Fixed and Variable Analysis’ with statistics running through lines and verses and not just as a function of word distribution.

Recently was listening to Jayadeva’s ‘Gita Govindam’. It seemed amazingly simple in structure, more like a stack of compound words and lacking the usual entropy of noun and verb endings and yet had a variety of rhyming words pouring out. This is in steep contrast to the intricate weaving style of Meghadootha. Perhaps this makes ‘meghadootha’ more suitable for literary enjoyment and ‘geetgovindam’ for Bhakthi.

Sometime back I was reading a news letter and it kind of gave me a headache. I jumped to the bottom of the article and it was not surprising that it was AI generated and hence was missing the ‘harmony’ aspect.

I was listening to ‘Sherlock Holmes’ narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch on BBC Audio Books. Small and humble situations would be painted with the most colourful choice of words. And yet there would be a distinct and repetetive style of British narration and pun. I could easily relate to the ‘fixed’ and ‘variable’ analysis here.